Recommended Backpacking Gear
A list of the best lightweight backpacking gear.
Recommended Backpacking Gear has a focus on value—great performance and reasonable cost.
Please check back periodically.
This will be expanded over the next six months to a year to include recommend equipment for all gear categories. For the time being, this will be a list of recommended gear for the “Big Three,” Backpacks, Sleeping Bags (and Quilts), and Tents (to include all forms of shelter).
The vast inventory at the Big REI Anniversary Sale can be overwhelming. This year I've done a bunch of research to select some of the best lightweight gear at the sale. In particular, I list some good items to use your "Members Save 20% Off One Full Priced Item. Plus Save an Extra 20% Off one Garage Item." Shop early for best selection...
Down quilts are far and away the best sleep value for most backpacking trips. They are half the cost and substantially lighter than sleeping bags. For example, a +20°F down quilt like the one above [...]
One hammock can do it all—and well! The Chameleon, works in all conditions from hot, bug infested jungles to bitter cold winters of the Northeastern US. In the following "Review of Dutchware Chameleon Hammock," I discuss what [...]
This gear is smarter, lighter and more thoroughly tested than your typical buyer's guide. Enjoy our picks of the best light and practical gear in our 2016 Smart Gift Guide for Hikers and Backpackers. There's cool gear from [...]
A 9 pound pack is all you need to be safe and warm. So, if you want to lower your pack weight but retain all the convenience and comfort of “traditional” backpacking, look no further than this Lightweight Backpacking [...]
Forget synthetics! Down rocks. A lightweight down jacket is the most weight and cost effective way to stay warm. Lightweight down jackets are less expensive than synthetics,* they weigh less, but most importantly they are so much [...]
This year we had a local backpacker freeze to death. They'd likely be alive today if they had brought a Satellite Messenger and activated its emergency signal (by the time they were reported missing and the [...]